- What is Iron?
- Food Sources of Iron
- 11 Impressive Health Benefits of Iron
- Bottom Line
Iron benefits to the body includes improving cognitive function, treating anemia, supporting the muscle, aiding oxygen circulation, boosting the immune system and treating fatigue. Other benefits treating restless leg syndrome that is a result of iron deficiency, acting as neurotransmitter and helping reverse insomnia.
Iron is an essential nutrient for the growth of your body. Since it is responsible to promote the production of red blood cells, iron deficiency can lead to a number of health problems. Moreover, the deficiency of this mineral is common among women and children, but there are plenty of sources available to overcome it. Iron is also essential to provide oxygen to the organs; therefore, your body should have balanced levels of it. This way you will stay active and safe from other daunting health problems.
What is Iron?
Iron helps produce red blood cells. If your body does not have enough of this mineral, you will begin developing symptoms associated with anemia. However, in case your diet does not consist of iron, the body does naturally store 25% of the mineral to use to make more red blood cells. But 25% isn’t enough in the long run, which is why you have to incorporate a diet rich in iron. Moreover, around 70% of iron is present in the hemoglobin and myoglobin; hemoglobin is known to transport oxygen to all the tissues from the lungs whereas myoglobin is found in muscle cells and is said to make the release of oxygen possible in muscle cells.
It is worth mentioning that 25% iron of your body is naturally stored in ferritin, which is found in your body cells. In men, ferritin can store iron supplementation for three years, but for women, it stores for one year. This is why anemia is common in women.
Food Sources of Iron
- White beans 8 mg
- Dark chocolate 7 mg
- Oyster 6 mg
- Spinach 6 mg
- Beef liver 5 mg
- Lentils 3 mg
- Blueberries 5 mg
- Tofu 3 mg
- Eggs 1 mg
- Potato 2 mg
- Chickpeas 2 mg
- Tomatoes 2 mg
- Cashew nuts 2 mg
11 Impressive Health Benefits of Iron
1. It improves your Cognitive Function
Your brain requires iron for better cognitive function. It is evident that for proper functioning, your brain needs oxygenated blood as it uses 20% of the oxygen found in the blood. It is also essential to perform quick cognitive functions and for overall brain health. It not just enhances the blood flow in your brain, but it also brain helps create new neural pathways preventing daunting cognitive problems such as Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. This is why nutritionists stress over a diet that is enriched with iron.
2. For Muscles
A number of studies have proved that iron is an extremely important nutrient for your muscles. Iron is found in muscle tissues and supplies oxygen for enhanced muscle contraction. This contraction is necessary to maintain muscle elasticity and tone. It is noteworthy here that muscle weakness is a major symptom of anemia.
3. It Treats Anemia
In anemia, your body stops creating red blood cells gradually. Now this can lean a slew of devastating health disorders including organ failure. Since it is a common health problem, there are plenty of natural sources and supplements that help overcome anemia. In women, anemia can cause hurdles during pregnancy and if not treated on time, it might adversely affect the growth of the fetus. Anemia is quite common in children and you can treat it by incorporating fresh fruits and vegetables into their regular diet.
4. Circulates Oxygen
Proper circulation of oxygen in your body contributes to better bodily functioning. The iron enables oxygen to travel to one cell to another without any hindrance. Since oxygen is naturally required by your organs, a substantial amount of iron ensures its rapid supply.
5. For Chronic Diseases
Iron alone doesn’t treat chronic diseases related to the intestinal and excretory system. The required amount of it combined with other components do the job. Experts always suggest balanced iron levels in blood so that its deficiency doesn’t affect a patient who is already suffering from a life-threatening health problem.
6. It Boosts Immune System
Amongst all the minerals and vitamins that are important to strengthen your immune system, iron plays an essential role. According to a study, only an adequate amount of iron in your blood can treat various ailments. This is a highly required nutrient as it fights factors that contribute to a number of diseases and infections. Iron also promotes the growth of red blood cells in your blood, which then repairs damaged tissues and cells preventing further problems. Hemoglobin that is found in your blood is known to make your immune system stronger. These components in blood are extremely important to provide oxygen to your organs including your immune system. Hence, consuming iron loaded diet and make this process run without any hindrance.
7. It Treats Fatigue
Fatigue is widely found in men and women both. It is dangerous and may get troubling if you keep ignoring it. According to experts, iron deficiency is one of the reasons associated with the chronic fatigue. You can get rid of it by consuming a diet that contains plenty of iron content. Moreover, an adequate amount of iron and hemoglobin in your blood not just helps prevent fatigue, but it also keeps you energized throughout the day.
8. Iron for Insomnia
It feels utterly irritating when you have spent a day working; you’re tired, but still can’t sleep. If continued for weeks, this condition can get stressful and will become dangerous for your overall wellbeing. Therefore, look for symptoms and try to treat them on time. Moreover, a study reveals that most these insomniacs are found iron deficient. The study also suggests that frequent blood pressure fluctuation often keeps you awake. Here iron comes to rescue; incorporate foods that are packed with it and enjoy some restorative sleep.
9. For Metabolic Functions
Your metabolic function is important as it produces energy from the food you consume and supply it to other parts of your body. With the help of iron, your metabolism works faster, which also aids in weight loss.
10. Iron for Neurotransmitter Synthesis
It is known as an active participant when it comes to synthesizing numerous neurotransmitters such as norepinephrine, serotonin, and dopamine. These chemicals are considered essential as they perform various functions.
11. For Restless Leg Syndrome
Scientists have found that iron deficiency contributes to restless leg syndrome. It happens when the level of iron in your blood drop, resulting in muscle spasms. You can treat this deficiency by consuming iron supplements. However, it is recommended to consult with your physician in this regard.
These benefits are evident that iron is extremely important for your overall health. Your body needs nourishment so stop making wrong food choices. Hence, starting consuming nutrients like iron to avoid health problems and live a healthy life.